In the early 1950s Revell released some of the first plastic warship models. They all had flat bottoms. In the last half of the 1950s, Revell introduced much more realistic kits of USN warships. Among these was the modernized USS Essex. As
decades passed, Revell kept re-releasing the
Essex kits as other members of the class, Usually with only a change in aircraft and decals. Mark Tutton used the venerable Revell kit to produce the USS Wasp CVS-18 in 1:540 scale to enter in the 2019
US IPMS National Convention. Mark heavily modified the original kit. First, he removed the lower hull. The hull was widened and aft gun tub was removed and replaced with Miliput and sheet plastic. He scratch-built the island, gallery deck structures
and hangar deck. Aircraft is from Monogram, Revell and resin cast models. The SH-3 was modified to show the helicopter in stowed position with scratch-built rotors. Starfighter resin aft gun gallery, Mk 29 directors, twin 3-inch AA mounts, 5-inch
gun mounts, ship markings and aircraft markings were used. Phasor 90s, aircraft propellers, radar, ladders, figures and some watertight doors were added. Gold Medal Models rails and other photo-etch was used. Other additions include adding
external piping with Evergreen rods. He also added hawse pipes and scratch-built the mast.